We were very glad to get your wire and to know you had had a good journey. It came just before we started out for Ben-na-drove to see if Mr. Matheson would undertake our peats for us this year… Bessie went into town to look for Marion and on our way home we met her with Marion and Katie Maciver going out. Papa was very vexed at the Lewis girls all going late to the J.C… Stornoway, 22nd April. 1917

In her letter to Jean this week, Mrs Gibson gives us further insight into daily life in Stornoway in 1917, including organising their peat cutting and monitoring their bee population. Mrs Gibson also mentions ‘the J.C.’ – if anyone could enlighten us on the meaning of ‘the J.C.’, we would very much appreciate it. The next in our series of letters from the W.J. Gibson collection held by Museum nan Eilean. Please get in touch if you have any comments: archives@cne-siar.gov.uk

Dear She-ann,

We were very glad to get your wire and to know you had had a good journey.  It came just before we started out for Ben-na-drove to see if Mr. Matheson would undertake our peats for us this year.  We saw only Mrs. Matheson. Then we crossed over to Laxdale and stayed the rest of the evening.  Bessie went into town to look for Marion and on our way home we met her with Marion and Katie Maciver going out.  Papa was very vexed at the Lewis girls all going late to the J.C.

I have not washed this week as the weather has been wet and I have been busy.  Was at sewing meeting on Wednesday and on Thursday all the Clark children were here to tea, and I had to make some preparations.  I think they enjoyed themselves. Last night Mrs Clark was in with Bessie to say “Good bye”.  Bessie is getting a calm night and fortunately it is not so cold as it was, for her deck journey.  Poor lass!  I hope she will get on well this session.

We had a letter yesterday from Mr. Taylor and he said you were not to wait for an invitation to Cults and you couldn’t “come wrong”.  Take Maud this time.  Glad to hear she is looking well and had a good holiday.

Where is the new girl from?  Does she study with you?  How is Gladys?  How is the menu?  If you have such an early breakfast you will need something between that and dinner.  See that you get it.  I suppose you can easily but don’t forget about the tonic and the emulsion, one in the morning and the other at night.  Be a good girl now and don’t argue about it.

Papa has no teachers coming and is six short every day.  He saw Mr. Macintyre yesterday and proposed that they should ask Mrs. Menzies and Miss Ella Mackenzie to take a half day each.  So there is to be a meeting on Tuesday.

Papa and I felt the house very empty without you at first but the session is not long and soon we’ll be thinking of you coming home again.  I forget to tell you that Mr. T. said he had had three girls from the J.C. digging his garden, (one of them Toe-ta (?) has) and they did well.  Wasn’t that good for Chrissie.  I wonder how her legs were after?  Eh!  What!

If you see Mr. Anderson tell him the bees were booming among the willow catkins till 7.30 last evening.  The flowering currant has failed them this year.

Now Ducky write us all your news; nothing is too small to interest us.  Love from us both to our little She-ann.

Your loving Ma

Ref: 1992.50.64i/L41

Transcribed by Dawn Macdonald, Archive collections assistant

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